IMAM SHAFI'I r.a. (150 A.H. - 204 A.H.) 

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The Imam Ahmed Raza Academy
for permission to reprint this article

Mohammed ibn Idris Al Shafi'i r.a. famously known as Imam Shafi'i was born in 150 A.H. [767 C.E.] and belonged to the Quraish tribe.


When he was 10 years old, he went to Makkatul Mukarramah [Mecca] from Palestine where he grew up. He was very intelligent and had an excellent memory. He memorized the entire Holy Quran at the age of 7. By the age of 15, he had memorized the entire Muwatta of Imam Malik r.a. Before the age of 20, he studied Islamic jurisprudence under the Mufti of Makkatul Mukarramah, Muslim ibn Khalil al Zanji and also Sufyan ibn Uyayana. Imam Malik ibn Anas was also his teacher.


When the Governor of Iraq visited Madinatul Munawarah, [Medina] he was so impressed by Imam Shafi'i r.a. that he persuaded him to become an Administrator. As Imam Shafi'i r.a. was in conflict with the Government officials, he was deported to Iraq and brought in front of Haroon Rashid who was very impressed with Imam Shafi'i r.a.

He now studied Islamic jurisprudence under Imam Mohammed Ash Shaybani, who was the student of Imam Abu Yusuf, who was the student of Imam A'zam Abu Hanifa r.a.. Thus Imam Shafi'i r.a. became a master of both the Hanafi and Shafi'i School of Fiqh.


On his way to Egypt, he lectured in Makkatul Mukarramah in the Haram Sharif. Imam Ahmed ibn Hanbal,who was studying at the time in Makkatul Mukarramah found great benefit from these lectures. Imam Shafi'i then went to Baghdad where he spent 3 or 4 years and finally went to Egypt. He was now 50 years old.

In Egypt, scholars from all over the world came to study at his feet. His famous pupils were Rabi ibn Sulayman, Abu Yacoob Al Ruwayta and Abu Ebrahim ibn Yahya Al Muzani.


"Kitabul Umm" and "Ar Risalah" are the two famous books on Islamic Fiqh written by him.


Some reports say that he was injured seriously by a person called Fityan, while other reports mention that he passed away through natural illness on the last day of Rajab in the year 204 A.H. [819 C.E.] in Egypt.

Malik Al Kamil, the Ayyubid Sultan, built a Mazaar for him in 608 A.H. [1211 C.E.]